Everyday we see good and evil all around us. And if we are honest we see both good and evil inside our own hearts.
Some people say that good and evil are nothing but human judgments — names that we give certain attitudes and/or behaviors. And since humans decided what is good and evil, then we can redefine the concepts anytime we want. This is the basis for situational ethics.
Other people say that the concepts of good and evil are survival mechanisms implanted in human beings through the evolutionary process. Thus our sense of conscience evolved as a mere biological warning system.
Still other people proclaim that good and evil are invisible, impersonal forces (similar to gravity) that work in the world and in and through people.
However, my personal experience doesn’t match any of the human theories of good and evil. Good and evil both communicate with me. My heart and my brain are constantly seduced, tormented, and coerced by evil thoughts, feelings, and desires; and continually wooed, entreated, and warned by good ones. Somehow the epic battle between good and evil is taking place inside of me and I have to make moment-by-moment decisions which side to stand for. Although I sincerely want to choose good, sometimes I lamely fall for evil choices.
My experience matches the Bible which teaches that good comes from the living God and that evil is what resists and/or rebels against God. Thus good and evil are engaged in battle for the human heart and brain. However, they are not just forces like gravity, but are invisible, intelligent beings — God and His angels are good; the devil and his demons are evil. And both sets of intelligent, personal beings are fighting for your soul — the essence of who you are.
So which side will win you over? “Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you.”
Sometimes I ask people to help me illustrate how good and evil work. I will ask one person to play the devil and another person to play God. I ask them each to grab one of my arms and on my word to begin to begin a tug of war. At first they pull and nothing much happens. However, when I begin to pull away from “the devil” I move in God’s direction. Then when I begin to pull away from God, I move in the devil’s direction. (Afterwards I am quite sore.)
People always see the point. In the midst of the battle for your soul, your life will go in the direction that you pull. Regularly resist God and give yourself to evil and evil will consume you. Regularly resist the devil and give yourself to God and He will transform you.
Which way are you pulling? Mostly toward God? Mostly toward the devil? Or constantly back and forth?